You need a lawyer if you are injured on-the-job in New York to help you understand your legal options, including your right to file a worker’s compensation claim. Employers are required by the law to provide a reasonably safe and healthy work environment to their employees. You may be injured at work because your employer failed to fulfill this duty as required by law.
Injuries at work you may suffer include broken bones, occupational illnesses, aggravations of pre-existing conditions, and even psychological conditions.
As you can see injuries at work are serious, and you could be off work for months or even longer. So, you need a lawyer to represent you when injured at work because:
A Lawyer Has Knowledge of The Law
A lawyer will represent you with full knowledge of the law. For example, your employer cannot claim that you were partially responsible for causing the accident that resulted in your injuries. With full knowledge of the law, your employer will be able to negotiate a more favorable settlement for you.
A Lawyer Understands Your Worth in the Case
An attorney understands you deserve compensation and with the experience he or she has in settling similar cases, your case is in good hands. Your employer knowing you are well represented by a lawyer cannot try to make a lower offer and claim you are not entitled to compensation for your injury.
Your Injury Is Severe
Your injury is severe so you need to be guaranteed that your medical bills will be catered for and lost wages will be included in your settlement. Because such a settlement is costly to an employer, they fight tooth-and-nail to deny liability and the extent of your injuries. A lawyer will represent your interests best regardless of the fight an employer brings.
Your Case Needs Effective Presentation
In the event you had a pre-existing medical condition that was worsened by injury at work, your employer may argue that you are not entitled to compensation. This is not true. A lawyer will be able to effectively argue this case about that situation in court to ensure you get compensated.
There Could Be A Potential Third-Party Claim
Even though you are injured at work, you could have a claim against another party besides your employer. For example, you work as a driver and become involved in an accident; the cause of the accident could partially be attributed to a negligent driver. A lawyer will ensure all parties that are at fault will compensate you for the injury you’ve suffered.
Protect Your Rights If Injured at Work
An attorney will help protect your rights if injured at work, but you need to report your injury to your employer. You need to report your injury within a certain time frame as this is a law requirement in some states. The requirement is typically the same day or within a few days of injury occurrence.
Ensure you report your injury as quickly as possible.
After you are injured at work, promptly notify your immediate supervisor. Your employer is then required to ensure you receive all necessary medical attention. Also, employers must notify their insurance companies and file a claim with the state worker’s compensation board.
You need a lawyer for he or she will ensure that your employer follows all these through and that you get worker compensation you deserve.
A worker compensation funds all medical bills, including for diagnosing and treating injury, doctor appointments, prescriptions, surgery, and medical equipment. A lawyer will also ensure you get vocational rehabilitation benefits if you will not be able to return to work after recovery.
There are four types of vocational rehabilitation benefits or disability benefits:
- Temporary partial disability: you will receive this benefit if after recovery you only perform light job duties until you are able to return at the same level of performance you were before
- Temporary total disability: you receive this benefit when you are not able to attend work for quite some time
- Permanent partial disability: you may experience a partial or complete loss of functioning of a body part which affects your ability to work. You receive the benefit in such a case
- Loss of life benefit: in the event of loss of life, your family will receive compensation
When to Seek A Lawyer If Injured at Work
Seek an attorney immediately in the period you are injured. A lawyer is in the best position to guide you through the process of ensuring you get the benefits you deserve. Even if your work injury is relatively minor don’t hesitate to seek medical treatment and a lawyer’s help. If you hesitate to go for medical treatment and seek a lawyer’s advice, you may aggravate your condition which is a risk for further injury.
A Lawyer Ensures Your Rights Are Observed Under Workers’ Compensation Laws
Workers’ compensation laws give you rights if injured at work to get a monetary settlement. A lawyer will lay legal procedures t ensure those rights are followed through. The following are your legal rights an attorney will help you through:
- The right to file a claim for your injury or illness in workers’ compensation court or state industrial court.
- Your right to get funds for medical bills and pursue medical treatment
- The right to return to work after recovery, according to your physician’s recommendation
- Your right to disability compensation if you are not able to return to work because of your injury or illness
- Your right to a complaint if you don’t agree with any decision by your employer, insurance company, or the workers’ compensation court. You have the right to appeal their decisions.
Same as your right to act, it’s just as important as your right to refuse offers. A lawyer will help you even in your right to refuse. For example, when your employer tells you to use your health insurance to pay medical bills instead of theirs.